Saturday, March 28, 2009

The Blame Game...Even Dragons Do It!

Readers/friends/patrons of the written word, today I am overseeing a debate/discussion/ dialogue between two of my cohorts, the white Dragon Saavinstor from Cynmynmire, and the red Dragon, Braavistor of Tasymur. They are opponents in the campaign for the important position of Head Dragon of the Exalted Cave of Camaraderie in Isoladia. I've brought the two together to expound on/explain/regurgitate their viewpoints, qualifications and plans should they gain the position of Head Dragon.

[Me] "Welcome, Saavinstor and Braavistor to my humble interview cave. Settle your haunches/ rears/backsides where you will and we shall begin. I will start with Saavinstor who--"

[Braavistor] "What! Why would you start with him? I am just as important/significant/ essential a Dragon as he!"

[Me] "Indeed, you are both important personages, Braavistor, but to preclude/avoid/prevent just such a complaint, I decided to base the opening remarks on age. Saavinstor is, I believe, a few hundred years older than you?"

[Braavistor] "But that's age discrimination! Next thing you'll be saying he's better suited for the position because he's got those few extra hundred years sagging/drooping/slumping on his skeleton and wrinkling his brain."

[Saavinstor] "Sagging? Drooping? You rapacious pup! S'not a sag on my anatomy! I'm as firm as ever. The only wrinkles on my brain are excessive folds of gray matter that prove my intellectual fitness and superiority!"

[Braavistor] "My scales are harder, my claws sharper, and my arteries/veins/vessels still flow freely, which means my brain is far more active and viable."

[Me] "Perhaps if you would--"

[Saavinstor] "Are you suggesting a few years of seniority are indicative of clogged arteries? Slower thinking? Reduced cognitive ability? Now that is age discrimination. No older Dragon would ever vote for you."

[Braavistor] "I'm not speaking of all elderly--uh--ancient, uh, more senior Dragons, just you."

[Saavinstor] "To malign one, is to malign all. I shall report you to the Society of Wiser Dragons by Reason of Longer Experience, as well as to the Organization of Artery Clogged Dragons, to whom we should all be kind/compassionate/sympathetic!"

[Braavistor] "I am not unkind to the less arterially able! And I shall report you to the Department of Youth is Just as Capable for suggesting I am less capable/competent/ proficient for the mere sake that I've been breathing a few less years!"

[Me] "Well--now that that's settled...Saavinstor, please relate to us why you believe you are the best Dragon to take on the Head Dragon slot/spot/position."

[Saavinstor] "As you know, I have long advocated the necessity of camaraderie/friendship/companionship among our species. Our tendency toward territoriality does not compel--"

[Braavistor] "You have just insulted the Agency of Territorial Enthusiasts."

[Saavinstor] "I merely mentioned a Dragon behavioral pattern that is--"

[Braavistor] "And if one does not adhere to this 'behavioral pattern', are you suggesting they are not proper/complete/real Dragons?"

[Saavinstor] "I said no such thing! There are no set patterns/models/guides that specifically determine one's level of Dragonous!"

[Braavistor] "Then why did you bring it up?"

[Saavinstor] Growl!

[Me] "Perhaps you would allow Saavinstor to finish/complete/end a thought?"

[Braavistor] "Are you suggesting I'm rude?" Grrrrr

[Me] "I'm suggesting you allow us to get on with it! Unless you prefer to remain/stay/linger here all day?"

[Braavistor] "S'not that comfortable a cave. Go on white Dragon, finish whatever is brewing/stewing/sloshing about in that excessive gray matter."

[Saavinstor] "Bah! How can one think in such a malevolent atmosphere?"

[Me] "Actually, I take offense at Braavistor's statement/comment/derogatory remark, as well as yours, Saavinstor. I believe this cave has a very convivial atmosphere. Seems perfectly comfortable to me."

[Saavintor] "My reference is to the unpleasant mien/countenance/attitude of my opponent! What can one expect of a red Dragon?"

[Braavistor] "He's slandering my color! This is unthinkable--you biased buffoon!"

[Saavinstor] "All buffons will object to that! Red is as red does! Always an ill temper and a short fuse!"

[Braavistor] "Ha! I caught you at it. Decimating the character of some decent stick of dynamite/explosive/detonating device. Growl--you are unacceptable as an opponent, you sanctimonious wicked white !"

[Saavinstor] Roar! "You screaming scarlet malicious maniac!"

[Me] "Sorry, apologies, regrets fellow readers and worshippers of the written word. The discussion on Dragon Camaraderie is temporarily postponed..."

Friday, March 6, 2009

The Fruits of the Labor...or...Eating the Words.

Dragons do not eat words/written expressions/ visual statements. No substance to them, you know. At least not in the caloric/energy/joules sense. Oh, they are a 'meaty' matter, but not in the manner of beef, fowl, or fish. Nay. Rather we Dragons generate words. Our phenomenal minds create clever contextual concepts. Engender energetic expressions. Spawn spectacular seeds of stimulating speech. Ah, well, you get the gist.

Words come naturally, nowadays, to us Isoladian Dragons. I have no idea how the beasts derived in other lands/worlds/places of authorial imagination communicate. For most of them I anticipate growls, grunts and roars are most often the vocabulary of the day. One cannot visualize much conversation, let alone accomplishment, from that. But to each his/her/its own.

'Tis any wonder I prefer Dragons with a flare for vocabulary? Lexicon? A glorious glossary of gab?

Such as that young Dragon who wings through Naomi Novik's books, Temeraire. Her historical fantasies are incredible. Or the old codger of cinematic fame, who managed to talk his way onto the big screen/monitor/display in Dragonheart. Even better--Jo Walton's Dragons in Tooth and Claw are chatty, intellectual, perfectly worthy beings who thrive in a world not unlike that in which humans dwell. Now there are Dragons worth their salt (not to be sprinkled on their words, which, of course, we have already determined are not eaten).

Ah, so...why do I discourse on wordy Dragons? Because I must point out that we Dragons are late arrivals to the marvels of language. Dialogue. Conversation. We speak, and subsequently write, because we remain enthralled by not only the process, but the wonder of the capacity/ability/ aptitude of the deed! The novelty has not yet worn off. Humans attained the skill so long ago, they no longer truly appreciate the miracle of it. Oral communication is a phenomenon in itself (at least it is for us; how would you like to manage verbalization's via a hard length of jaw over a forked tongue and eventually through fangs?) I for one doubt you could manage it. We Dragons do because we've no option, and we possess stubbornness/ persistence/tenacity without equal. And--we love the endeavor, the mental connection, the ready, heady interplay of knowledge.

The written word, however, is even more splendid. The rendering of brainwaves in visual form upon parchment/papyrus/dinner napkins. The embodiment of thought in a physical shape. Vigorous verbs. Artful adjectives. Noble nouns. Squiggles that, when appropriately arranged, expose the wisdom of the ages. The exultation's. Every soulful sentiment slipping out. The prettiness...and the pettiness.

I ask in all curiosity: do you write because you love words, or love words because you write? You have probably not given it due thought, any more than the chicken when asked to determine whether or not it preceded its egg/shell/ fertilized embryo! Perhaps because I am a Dragon I view the question from a more simplistic perspective than you more complex humans. For us it is the former rather than the latter. And the latter is not without worth because exercising your ability with words builds appreciation of those building blocks. Those structuring stones. Those edifying bricks of ideas. Oh, as a poetic Dragon would say: good, better, best, never let it rest, until the good is better, and the better best. Even a youngling human understands this!

The written word is not only the building block of ideas, but of civilizations. Those who love words, write. Those who write, love words--or will learn to. Ergo--if you love to write, then teach/impart/ gift those who lack the skill so that they, too, may taste/savor/relish the fruits of the laboring pen/quill/keyboard.

I speak of fruit metaphorically, of course. Remember--we do not eat the words! If you swallow them, spit them out. If you spit them out, then spread them about. Water with feelings. Fertilize with enthusiasm. Watch your garden grow: sentence, by paragraph, by page. Articles. Novels. Laws. Edicts. Libraries. Universities. Cities. The world.

Ah! The very thought makes my gullets growl! Or is that my brain, formulating scrumptious, succulent, yummy words?